This fall, I’m teaching the Design Sprint process in four cities—here’s why
Two and a half years ago, when we published Sprint, I thought to myself: “Cool, mission accomplished.” The Design Sprint recipe — based on Jake’s work at Google and our years of experimentation together at Google Ventures — was out in the world, described in enough detail that anyone could pick up the book and run their own sprint. (Indeed, many teams have done just that.)
But I had a blind spot. Because we had done so many sprints at GV—about 150 after five years—I forgot what it was like to have never done a sprint before. I didn’t think about how hard it could be to run that very first sprint. Dumb, I know. I was struck by the curse of knowledge.
While I was blissfully ignorant, folks like AJ&Smart and Design Sprint Academy were training would-be sprinters on the process—helping them go from sprint zero to sprint one. In 2017, Jake started offering his own design sprint workshops in Tokyo, Austin, Oslo, and other exotic locales. He kept telling me how great they were. I was intrigued.
Earlier this year, I dipped a toe into the design sprint training waters. I ran a private workshop in San Francisco. I facilitated a sprint in New York. I joined one of Jake’s workshops as a guest. I saw how excited people were to participate, how much they got out of the training, and how fun it was for everyone involved — including me!
These workshops helped designers deepen their understanding of sprints and learn concrete ways to work with stakeholders. Non-designers loved learning a process that made design (which can often seem mysterious) concrete and tangible. Marketers, product managers, executives, and others got a new set of tools for making better decisions, reducing risk, and moving fast. And everyone saw the power of what happens when you replace the crazy defaults of modern workplace culture with a process that’s focused, face-to-face, and thoughtful.
Meanwhile, having left my job at GV, moved out of San Francisco, published another book, traveled by sailboat for eight months, and established a new home in Milwaukee, I was fortunate to be asking myself a big question: How do I want to spend my time? My mission is to help people make time for what matters (at work and at home), and I realized that teaching people the design sprint process could be a part of that mission.
So I’ve decided to dive in with a “Fall 2018 Tour” of the Official Design Sprint Bootcamp! I’m bringing this 1-day sprint training to Chicago, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, and then back home to Milwaukee! In each city, I’m working with an amazing local host who’s also an experienced design sprint facilitator.
(And in true sprint fashion, I’m thinking of these four workshops as an experiment—a prototype of what it’d be like to make this kind of work a big part of how I spend my time.)
Here’s a promo video created by Maicol Parker-Chavez, my host in LA:
Here’s my schedule for the next month — it’s going to be intense and fun! If you’re interested in joining us, please click through and pick up a ticket.